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Wednesday, November 19 2003

. . . And Bless the Mic for the Gods: Rakim Allah

When Greg Tate published his groundbreaking essay 'Diary of a Bug' the first 'text' he took up was none other than Rakim Allah, the Poet Laureate of the Hip-Hop Nation. Indeed there's never been a hip-hop artist who deserved top-shelf scholarly love from the camp of the Blackademe Niggeratti more than Rakim.

Thursday, November 13 2003

Farewell, Norton: Art Carney (1918-2003)

May he greet his maker with the kind of epigrammatic simplicity with which Norton once addressed a golf ball, 'Hello ball.'

Wednesday, November 12 2003

Using Language Against Itself: An Interview with Robbie Conal, ArtBurn

You’ve seen them. Garish black and white caricatures of Real Important white guys (OK, sometimes a couple black ones) in their suits, smart-ass wordplay

CMJ Music Marathon: Do It Yourself (And With the Help of Your Licensing, Marketing and Publicity Tea

Associate Concert Editor Christine Di Bella takes a look back at what CMJ really had to offer its participants -- and the answer might be a redefinition of the DIY ethos.

Wednesday, November 5 2003

Burying Lester Bangs

Dead at 33, Bangs has risen, Christ-like, from the pens and keyboards of hundreds or maybe thousands (what feels like millions) of rock scribes from sea to shining sea, all spewing their paltry imitations of Bangs's 'speedflight wordsperm bullshit.'

Monday, November 3 2003

The Tortured Soul of Marvin Gaye and R. Kelly

R. Kelly is no Marvin Gaye, nor should he be. But R. Kelly is a Soul Man, who seemingly for lack of any other recourse, has chosen to share his demons with us through his music as so many tortured Soul Men of the past have.

Tuesday, October 28 2003

Elliott Smith: 1969-2003

Smith wrote beautiful, brutally honest and touching music, but his songs were most effective while he was still among the living. In the end, he didn't cheat death; he only cheated us.

Elliott Smith: A Fond Farewell

Elliott Smith's art was an articulation of his soul -- his 'figurative self', if you prefer -- coming to terms with its inherently, inescapably flawed corporeal frame. This inner turmoil made for great music. And in the end, it probably killed him.

Monday, October 27 2003

CMJ Music Marathon: Day Four: Sick of Rock

Can rock and roll make you sick? And should we want it to? Day four of PopMatters CMJ Festival coverage.

CMJ Music Marathon: Day Three: Where My Girls At?

Day Three's coverage of CMJ seeks to find out where the girls are.

Friday, October 24 2003

Dizzee Rascal: The End of Garage’s Beginning

Like The Streets' Mike Skinner, Dizzee approaches UK Garage with a seriousness that elevates it from dancefloor juice to art. On 'Boy in Da Corner', he uses garage as the jumping off point for an ear-bending journey through the music of fin-de-siecle African diaspora, in much the same way Tricky used UK dance music 10 years ago on 'Maxinquaye'.

CMJ Music Marathon: Day Two: Revenge of the Singer/Songwriter

More coverage of Day Two, including run-ins with the sensitive side of CMJ.

CMJ Music Marathon: Days One and Two: CMJ on the Free

Strapped for cash? Day two of our CMJ coverage is a lesson in doing the festival on the cheap.

Thursday, October 23 2003

CMJ Music Marathon: Day One: Travis vs. CMJ

Day One of our coverage of the New York-based new music festival, including pit stops with Travis, the Killers, Menlo Park, and the Prosaics.

Wednesday, October 22 2003

Rush to Judgment: America’s Mishandling of the Donovan McNabb-Rush Limbaugh Controversy

True to form, Rush Limbaugh had managed to rile up the nation and draw attention to himself while boosting Sunday NFL Countdown viewership to the tune of a 10 point ratings increase.

Monday, October 20 2003

6th November 2003

It's October. The dying days of 2003 loom on the horizon, heralding chilly fronts, wind-stripped trees and lashings of rain. Thankfully it's not all bad news, however, because October also ushers in this year's London Film Festival.

Thursday, October 9 2003

An Energetic and Imaginative Four-Year-Old: PopMatters is Four!

Energetic and imaginative best describes four-year-olds. They are able to learn new words quickly, and use them in chatting with you, telling you jokes and wild stories.

The World According to Shorts

What makes the 'World According to Shorts' Festival so satisfying year after year is the variety and excitement of the program.

Tuesday, October 7 2003

Afterbirth: Me’shell Ndegeocello

Conceived in the months after the September 11th attacks, Me'shell Ndegeocello's new release 'Comfort Woman' finds the artist reflecting on life, death and the everyday struggles of surviving a world seemingly coming apart at the seams.

Friday, September 26 2003

Stephen Gould’s Evolution: Iconoclast Popularizer to Pop Icon

The most fascinating issue on which Gould took his colleagues to task was adaptation, and whether evolution is progressive. Does natural selection work to improve living things? The Dawkins gang said yes; Gould said no.

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